Meaning of WATCH in English


/ wɒtʃ; NAmE wɑːtʃ; wɔːtʃ/ verb , noun

■ verb


to look at sb/sth for a time, paying attention to what happens :

[ vn ]

to watch television / a football game

[ vn , v ]

He watched the house for signs of activity.

He watched for signs of activity in the house.

[ v ]

'Would you like to play?' 'No thanks—I'll just watch.'

We watched to see what would happen next.

[ v wh- ]

Watch what I do, then you try.

[ vn -ing ]

She watched the kids playing in the yard.

[ vn inf ]

They watched the bus disappear into the distance.

➡ note at look


[ vn ] to take care of sb/sth for a short time :

Could you watch my bags for me while I buy a paper?


( BrE also mind ) ( informal ) to be careful about sth :

[ vn ]

Watch yourself (= be careful, because you're in a dangerous situation) !

Watch your bag—there are thieves around.

I have to watch every penny (= be careful what I spend) .

Watch your head on the low ceiling.

[ v wh- ]

Hey, watch where you're going!


- watch the clock

- a watched pot never boils

- watch it

- watch your mouth / tongue

- watch the time

- watch this space

- watch the world go by

—more at language , step noun


- watch for sb/sth

- watch out

- watch out for sb/sth

- watch over sb/sth

■ noun


[ C ] a type of small clock that you wear on your wrist, or (in the past) carried in your pocket :

She kept looking anxiously at her watch.

My watch is fast / slow.

—picture at jewellery

—see also stopwatch , wristwatch


[ sing. , U ] the act of watching sb/sth carefully in case of possible danger or problems :

The police have mounted a watch outside the hotel.

I'll keep watch while you go through his papers (= watch and warn you if somebody is coming) .

The government is keeping a close watch on how the situation develops.

—see also neighbourhood watch


[ C , U ] a fixed period of time, usually while other people are asleep, during which sb watches for any danger so that they can warn others, for example on a ship; the person or people who do this :

I'm on first watch .

I go on watch in an hour.

—see also nightwatchman


- be on the watch (for sb/sth)

—more at close (II) adjective



Old English wæcce watchfulness , wæccende remaining awake ; related to the verb wake . The sense small timepiece probably developed by way of a sense alarm device attached to a clock .

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.